Okay well I'm getting ready to go out with the girls to Mike's Place. Mike's Place is the famous American Bar in Tel Aviv that was bombed a few years back...
Bat Yam has been incredible...the beach is just beautiful. Okay so whats been going on here...We had our 1st apartment meeting--we passed! Since it was Chanukah we didn't have volunteering, instead we had different events taking place. We had an amazing hike in the Carmel. It was beautiful and slippery, it had rained the day and morning before. We were very muddy and it was probably one of my favorite hikes to this day. Afterwards we went to a Druse Village and walked around their for a little bit. It looked like any other small main street to be honest. I did by a pair of cozy socks.
The next day, Tuesday, all of Shevet went to Mevoh Modi'in to experience Chanukah. Its a moshav, which is kind of like a kibbutz but the people own their own homes and they just share the equipment. This moshav is famous for the music that has come out of it. Yes, The Moshav Band is from here. We didn't hear them, but we did hear a moshav band perform. Katie Jessica and I of course made fools of ourselves dancing but it was lots of fun. We davened mincha and then had a relaxation section with our tour guide and soufganiot. I always hated these back in the States, but they are delicious in Israel. (You can get them with chocolate!) Earlier that day we took a tour of the Macabean graves and a monument of fallen soldiers. Strangely enough it is now confirmed that these are not the graves of the Macabees but people still go there at this time of year.
On Wednesday, Shevet went to a hospital to give out gifts and play with children. Luckily there werent many children in the hospital, which meant that there wasn't much for us to do. Thursday evening the Tsofim created a chanukah mini carnival with games and fun. There was musical chairs, guess how much gelt can fit in the jar, sufganiot competition of fitting it in your mouth in 5, 4, 3, 2, and finally 1 bite. We made some candle melting art, which i love considering i love playing with fire, and i might have made a whole in the plate that i was working on...ooops.
And on Friday Shevet headed to Yishuv Keshet in the Golan for the weekend. But first Jessica Nicola and I had to walk to the Ulpan building in the rain! And at the bus stop we ran into a Birthright group where I saw Talia Schecter and Naomi ran into her bestfriend, Heather. It is a very small country! Keshet was lots of fun. It was cold and kind of yucky out Friday night but we had a nice dinner all together. Lots of singing, some drinking, and many laughs. I roomed with Jessica, Katie, and Naomi. Saturday i missed davening, i'm sorry but israelis daven wayyyyy tooo early for what i'm used to. We made it to lunch though! And then we went on a walk/tour with Ami, our madrich, who lived at Keshet for a year when he first made Aliyah. We got to see beautiful views of the Golan and Syria in the distance. We walked through Syrian bunkers that are now Israeli. Someone talked to us about making Aliyah and our views of why we are hesitant. Keshet has programs for new Aliyot to become accustomed to Army life and israeli life. It is a religious Yishuv. Also at the Yishuv were some people who are trying out the army to see if they want to convert to Judaism. I don't really understand their program but it sounded interesting I guess.
Yesterday we had our first classes. I'm taking a class on King David and then the David Project. The King David class is taught by an American from Jersey who made Aliyah 3 years ago. It should be interesting, it was just about background information leading up to why the Jews needed a King. The David Project is an Israeli Advocacy aimed towards educating highschoolers and college kids so that they are able to fight the inaccuracy and issues on college campuses. And last night, we had a bonfire with S'mores. It was really nice and a fundraiser for Garin Tsedik, which is an organization that Year Coursers has adopted teaching english to Ethiopian refugees.
Well I'm heading out now with girls,